The 2015 Philadelphia International Cycling Classic | Photo Essay
The Philadelphia International Cycling Classic, in its 30th year, brings a touch of European-style one day racing to the United States. It is one of the most spectator-friendly, energetic, and technically difficult races on the planet and gives the peloton a taste of something truly American. A twisting, undulating urban route through one of our country’s most historic cities, speeding by raised railroad tracks, rivers, party houses, and up and down the Manayunk Wall and Lemon Hill. This photo essay captures sights that make this race uniquely “Philly”, and one of the major highlights of the race calendar.
A palatial spread greets the riders every morning, thanks to soigneur Jose Sousa and his assistant in Philly, longtime team staffer John Garcia.
Patrick McCarty gets the cockpit of his Acura RDX race vehicle dialed in to his specifications.
Brad Huff uses a special kind of sunscreen with a zinc base for maximum ray relief. It also tends to make him look a little ghostly.
Jasmin Glaesser receives her queen of the mountains crown from Philadelphia’s fantastic mayor Michael Nutter and his avid cyclist wife.
Philadelphia has a vibrant young cycling community, and lots of kids spun up the Manayunk Wall to have a taste of the climb before watching the race.
West Chester native Scott Zwizanski got some chalk love on Lemon Hill. His dad, on the side of the course, explained to me that its been there for years and the city always tars over it, but people paint in back promptly.
Kiel Reijnen won the 2013 and 2014 editions of the race, and Jesse Anthony finished third behind him in ’13. No hard feelings, apparently.
Zwizanski on the attack on Lemon Hill
The peloton navigated this gorgeous rock tunnel along Kelly Drive twice on each lap.
Ryan Anderson was caught out after a flat tire. He stayed glued to the team car’s bumper to make it back into the fray.
Mike Woods charges up the Manayunk Wall on the final lap, a few feet short of a big UCI win.
Jesse Anthony and former team star Carmen Small hanging out after the race.
The Manayunk Wall lives up to its name and some – it is a very punishing climb, especially in multiples.
The effect of properly promoted women’s cycling is very apparent. It gives young girls some amazing role models to look up to, especially in the up close and personal atmosphere of cycling.
Lex Albrecht, spent after trying to move up on the final climb to the line. She started around 30th place, and ended up finishing in the top ten, frustrated with her performance.